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Thursday, October 11, 2018

10 THINGS FOR UNIVERSAL COLLISION CENTRE

1 - IN THE DANCE: It took 24 hours - and perhaps some help from a Calculus professor - for the CFL to declare that the Saskatchewan Roughriders clinched a playoff spot with Monday's 19-12 win over Edmonton. But the Riders weren't celebrating with champagne and turkey in their luxurious locker room.

"We've got bigger goals than the playoffs," spat Rider boss Chris Jones. "We're fortunate to be where we are. We've won enough football games to at least be in the dance and so now we wanna go, do our best, and try to secure home field of some sort. Keep chasing Calgary, and win the rest of 'em and let everything else fall in place. We treat every single game like it's the Grey Cup game. Some people say you can't do that but I totally disagree."

2 - FIRST PLACE: It seems unfathomable that the Roughriders could win 13 games and still not finish in first place but that speaks to the excellence of the front-running Calgary Stampeders (12-2). With 4 weeks to go, Saskatchewan is in a place where they have to win all their games and hope Calgary loses all theirs, which rarely happens. Winning the pennant has always been a goal of this year's Riders, but it's secondary to winning the Grey Cup (which the team is positioned well to do).

3 - SIMULATION: The CFL posted the first results of their popular computer simulation and here's what the PC spat out regarding CFL teams' chances of getting to the Grey Cup this year: Calgary (72%), Hamilton (58%), Ottawa (42%), Winnipeg (20%), Saskatchewan (8%) and Edmonton and BC (1%). Someone will need to explain to me why the Blue Bombers' odds are twice as good as the Riders to get to the Big Game? I was never good at math, but I know what I see.

4 - HOLD ON: Something seems fishy with the way holding penalties have been handed out in the CFL this year (and not handed out). Here's a stat on how many holding penalties on the OL have been called versus penalties against the DL (OL PEN Against/DL PEN For): Saskatchewan (19/7 = -12), BC (13/9 = -4), Montreal (13/11 = -2), Hamilton (8/7 = -1), Calgary (9/9 = 0), Winnipeg (11/13 = +2), Edmonton (12/16 = +4), Toronto (8/12 = +4), Ottawa (4/13 = +9).

5 - HAVING SAID THAT: The Riders got a favourable call upon video review of the alleged Roughing The Passer infraction of Zach Evans on Mike Reilly in Monday's game. The Eskimos have asked the CFL for clarification on that play but it's simple: if it was in the NFL it would've been a major foul, but not here in the CFL. Some have suggested a conspiracy to get the Roughriders into the Grey Cup in Edmonton but that's hogwash. Why wouldn't the League want the hometown Eskimos in the Big Game? Who comes up with this stuff? :)

6 - BE GRATEFUL: Monday's game was a chilly one, especially when the wind got up in the second half. But no one seemed to complain. But some people are still wondering why the new stadium wasn't made into a dome. The answer is simple: We couldn't afford it and the costs to heat and cool a dome would've bankrupt the City of Regina. Let's be glad we have the finest facility in the land and leave it at that.

7 - ONTO WINNIPEG: The Riders visit Winnipeg on Saturday in the 3rd game of their 3-game season series which Saskatchewan leads 2-0. Chris Jones was asked how hard it is to beat a team three straight times and he remarked, "It's hard enough to beat a team once!" The forecast for Saturday's game calls for rain/snow and +3 degrees Celsius. Kickoff is at 12:00 pm Sask Time on TSN and the 620 CKRM Radio Network.

8 - TRADE DEADLINE: The CFL's annual trade deadline came and went on Wednesday with little fanfare, although the Alouettes made a pair of deals. The Rider locker room was generally unfazed by the looming deadline. In fact when asked about it, QB Zach Collaros quipped, "Was it today?" Media types snickered about the dullness of the deadline, but it's a necessary evil. Some big trades have come on the deadline over the years including 2015's Tyler Crapigna/Jerome Messam swap between Saskatchewan and Calgary, which both teams would do again.

9 - SILENCE OF THE RAMS: 2018 will always be remembered as the year the University of Regina Rams got hit with the stiffest of penalties, being stripped of 3 wins for the use of an inelligible player. There are now rumours of the decision possibly being overturned and an online petition is circulating to help make it happen. To me, it boils down to one thing: If you want something done right, you still have to do it yourself.

10 - RANDOM THOUGHTS: I hate cats. ... The Riders lead the CFL in TV ratings and home attendance. ... I gained new respect for Pats captain Jake Leshyshyn for spearing an opponent with minutes to go in a 7-3 loss on Saturday. Old school! I didn’t know he cared that much. ... The Red Sox-Yankees rivalry remains the best in all of sports. ... Love seeing all the young kids at CFL games lately! The League seems to be on a major upswing. ... Kudos to former Commissioner Jeffrey L. Orridge - who's now a V.P. at Canadian Tire - for stepping up as the naming-rights sponsor of the CFLAA's Legends Luncheon at 2018 Grey Cup. ... Also loving the CFL's effort to partner with Mexico on a player exchange in the years ahead. Can we get a Rider game in Mexico City? ... It baffles me that the NHL would go to Germany and Sweden as part of its Global Series, then continue to insist "It's Our Game". ... After a 30-year grudge over the Gretzky Trade, I'm back being an Edmonton Oilers fan. One game in, I'm already disgruntled.

Y'er welcome,
RP
@rodpedersen

5 comments:

dave spad said...

Someone should tell that Computer that the last time the Bombers beat the Riders in a Playoff Game Lester B. Pearson was Prime Minister, or for that matter that since 1989 the Stampeders are a paltry 2 and 7 against the Riders in the Playoffs.

Have a hunch that those two trends won't change this year.

Go Riders!

Football Fan said...

2. It’ll be interesting to see what happens with Calgary next year. I think BLM is going to try the NFL, and I suspect that Calgary will then take a serious run at Reilly.

3. I’m sure that Blue Bombers number relates to their chances of being the crossover team. BC and Edm could easily finish anywhere from 3rd to 5th. I think Winnipeg is the best team of the three and is likely to finish either 3rd or 4th. If you crunch all the numbers including who the teams play the rest of the way I’m guessing that Winnipeg is the mostly likely crossover team, and whoever the crossover team is has a better chance to make it to the GC than anyone in the west other than the Stamps, but still only a 20% chance for Winnipeg. I haven’t crunched the numbers myself but I’m guessing that’s where the Winnipeg number comes from.

8. Wha’d are you talking about? The trade deadline was HUGE for the Riders. Blake probably only has a 2 or 3 years left but he’s a very good starting OL, a former 4th round NFL pick, and he’s Canadian. He only dropped to the 3rd round in the CFL draft because teams knew he was NFL bound. He’s versatile and can play C,G and T. I like Lavoie as well, big, powerful, can block, can catch. BIG trade! Stanford started strong this year but hasn’t done much for a while, and it looks like Jones was ready to move on. And a second round pick is a crap shoot. Part of the reason why Montreal traded Blake is that they have a bunch of young OLs, high draft picks, who they likely want to give playing time to to get ready for next year, and Blake has a big contract, but for us we only have to pay three games of it this year.

Tim said...

1. I hate cats too..
2. I agree with football fan about Winnipeg and their odds. Riders
have next to zero chance at a crossover. That seems to be Winnipeg's ticket to playoff success.
3. I was at the game Monday, Edmonton was holding our defensive line all afternoon, the holding calls were mostly if not all in Edmonton's favor. Not sure about the roughing the passer. No camera angle showed to me conclusively that helmet hit helmet.

Don Mitchell said...

Lots of room on the Winnipeg Jets bandwagon Rod!

Just imagine how high Scruffy's voice would get if announced that!!!

curo said...

I have no idea either how the Bombers odds are TWICE as good. My only guess would be they don't believe we have a good enough offense to win in the playoffs. I know they say defence wins championships but in the CFL you still need to score. The average score for winning teams in last years playoffss was 30.8. Thus far, we're averaging 26.5 points per game this year. Also, Winnipeg's offense has been improving and their defence has also look pretty good as much as I hate to say that. Guess we'll see Saturday. Go Riders